POTTSVILLE — Grocery store chain Aldi will close its store on Route 61 near Cressona Mall next week and open a new one 5 miles up the highway across from Fairlane Village mall.

According to a corporate announcement Tuesday, the new store in East Norwegian Township will open to the public at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18, while the existing store in North Manheim Township will close at the end of business Tuesday, Nov. 17. It opened in 1995.

“One of the reasons ALDI is so successful is because we listen to our customers and have the ability to adapt,” Bob Grammer, Aldi’s Center Valley division vice president, said in the release. “The Pottsville community has remained loyal ALDI customers for 25 years, and we can’t wait to show them the same ALDI model they know and love, but with a new store and even more space for their favorite products.”

The new 19,054-square-foot store will be open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., with curbside grocery pickup offered starting Dec. 1. It will have 348 parking spaces between it and neighboring Empire Beauty School.

The site was previously home to Fairlane Motor Inn and a state police station, but has more recently been used for seasonal tent rentals. In March, the company obtained a waiver to continue construction on the store amid the coronavirus pandemic as it is considered an essential business.

Spokeswoman Casey Miller said employees of the current store will be relocated to the new one.

Based in Germany, Aldi was founded by brothers Karl and Theo Albrecht in 1946 and expanded into the United States in 1976. The store chain is known for its discount prices on groceries and household items.

Along with the new store, another Aldi is in the Tilden Ridge development off Route 61 in Tilden Township.

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